By on June 30, 2008

6551.jpgIt looks like New Mexico's SOL. The Land of Enchantment tempted Tesla with a $7m incentive package (or was that $20m?) to locate the plant for their sometime-or-other upcoming electric sedan. Despite a big announcement from the then-governor's office, Tesla's changed their mind. The San Francisco Chronicle reports the electric car manufacturer promoter will announce today that they've chosen the Bay Area as the ertswhile production site for the vehicle formerly known as WhiteStar, in honor of the owners of the ill-fated Titanic (as far as we know). What swung the deal in the favor of the Golden Gate State? Well, besides the governator placing an order for his own $100k toy, Tesla will get a sales tax exemption on purchasing manufacturing equipment and grants for training new employees. The company says they'll start production of the $60k sedan (when else but) in 2010– even though there doesn't seem to be even any concept drawings of the new car.Time to revive the Tesla Birth Watch?

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14 Comments on “Tesla To Build Sedan in CA, Not NM...”


  • avatar
    Paul Niedermeyer

    Yes, since Nissan has announced that they will be building an EV sedan with similar specs for close to half the price.

  • avatar
    Lumbergh21

    Will they even have delivered the roadsters to their pre-paid customers by 2010? Seems highly unlikely.

  • avatar
    rtz

    Hand built alum/carbon fiber or spot welded stamped sheet metal? What type of volume?

    I suppose after they do their $60k car, they might try an even lower priced model?

    What’s the market like for $60k four doors? Just a plain old saloon car right? Nothing fancy or impressive? I’m thinking electric four door Camry for $60k? Count me out on that dog.

  • avatar

    Well, that’s great. At least my state won’t have to deal with the company as much when it undoubtedly goes bankrupt.

  • avatar
    yankinwaoz

    Lucky for NM. I think their taxpayers just dodged a bullet.

  • avatar
    jkross22

    Must be the lower labor costs in CA that tipped the scale. I hear space is cheap in the Bay area, too. Yet another fiscally responsible move by Tesla.

  • avatar
    Paul Niedermeyer

    Actually, a recent interview with Musk explains it. The biggest mistake he says they made was spreading parts of the Roadster production around the globe: battery pack in Thailand, the car without powertrain in England, final assembly in CA, etc. They’ve learned that outsourcing is very risky when you’re developing new technology (hence the transmission problems). They want to have better control over the whole production chain (should they get that far)of the White Star.

  • avatar
    doug

    Given the tone of this post, I’m surprised it’s not part of the Tesla Death Watch. What criteria determines the placement of a post? Also, I’m still confused by the continued misuse of the word erstwhile (misspelled above).

    Anyhow I think it makes sense to have manufacturing close to their engineering head quarters. Especially near Oakland since there’s a port there.

    http://gov.ca.gov/
    Streaming video of the announcement here.

    @rtz
    Supposedly the sedan will have stamped aluminum body panels and volume of around 20,000 units a year.

  • avatar

    Actually, a recent interview with Musk explains it. The biggest mistake he says they made was spreading parts of the Roadster production around the globe: battery pack in Thailand, the car without powertrain in England, final assembly in CA, etc. They’ve learned that outsourcing is very risky when you’re developing new technology (hence the transmission problems). They want to have better control over the whole production chain (should they get that far)of the White Star.

    New Mexico is a state in the United States, most well known for chile, hot-air balloons, desert, and nuclear weapons.

    Los Alamos was the place that they designed the bomb dropped on Nagasaki, and they tested it in Alamogordo. We have many technologically-advanced industries here.

  • avatar
    ZoomZoom

    I think this is even more proof that Tesla is DOA.

    The regulatory environment in California simply makes any new manufacturing concern a difficult-to-impossible proposal.

    But this may have been an ingenious move, to justify their incompetence. That’s because now they can blame their impending failure on something that EVERYBODY can understand:

    government-legal-enviro-bureaucracy-blah-blah-blah.

  • avatar
    rtz

    Car 5, Where Are You?

  • avatar
    doug

    rtz :
    Car 5, Where Are You?

    Perhaps you meant, “Car 54″??

  • avatar
    rtz

    I did. But I was inferring/implying to the yet to be delivered 5th roadster.

  • avatar
    TomAnderson

    Oh boy! I wonder, a couple years from now, what we’ll find out my tax money paid for: Hookers? Blow? All I know is, it ain’t gonna be no electric sedan!

    Thanks in advance, Arnie!


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